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Merri e-News June 2021

Merri e-News June 2021
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Merri E-News

JUNE 2021


Newsletter of the Merri Creek Management Committee (MCMC)


Help bring back the Merri banksias

2021 Merri Creek Environment Fund appeal

Silver Banksia JJ HarrisonOver the last 18 months our open spaces have become more precious to us than ever and the Merri Creek Parklands are no exception.

This year we are asking for your help to bring back the forgotten Banksia Woodlands of the Merri. These were once widespread but now none of the original Merri banksias remain. 

Your donation will also help support the harvesting and storage of seed from our precious Seed Production Areas and the care and monitoring of our nest-boxes and artificial hollows.

PLEASE DONATE: Donations of $2 or more to the Merri Creek Environment Fund are tax deductible. Pay by credit card via the secure GiveNow site.

Details for other payment methods are here, as well as more information about the Merri Creek Environment Fund.

Photo: Silver Banksia © JJ Harrison CC BY-SA 3.0

Community donations help with diverse Merri projects

Nest Box monitoringGenerous community donations to the Merri Creek Environment Fund in 2020 are supporting the expansion of our Nest Box project, the care of our Seed Production Areas and preliminary work on our Banksia Orchard.  All these projects are strengthening and diversifying the habitat value of the Merri Creek linear corridor. They also provide oportunities for community involvement.

Expanding our Nest Box Project

We are continuing and expanding our nest box and artificial hollow projects. Thirty new homes were installed in tall eucalypts in Merri Park Northcote over the last 12 months, bringing the total number at this location to 62. We also expanded to a new Merri site, at Moomba Park in Fawkner, where 30 homes were installed.


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Platypus prove popular

Platypus presentation 2 5 21Thirty participants joined an MCMC event, intriguingly named “Are there Platypus in Merri Creek?” in early May at the CERES Environmental Park in Brunswick East, by Merri Creek.

The event began with a presentation by Josh Griffiths from Cesar Australia about Platypus - their distribution, biology, diet, habitat requirements and current threats. The latter include loss of waterway habitat (removal of instream and bank vegetation) and the impact of 'urban stream syndrome', the combined effect of stormwater pollutants and too frequent high flows. Josh discussed the monitoring of platypus and how this is changing to be less invasive, including use of the citizen science Platypus spot app and of DNA to detect Platypus in waterways.


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Merri Litter Clean Ups are going strong

Litter clean up groupA big shout out to all the wonderful community groups and individuals within the Merri catchment who are doing their bit to remove litter from our streets, parks and waterways and preventing it from going into Port Phillip Bay.

In April 12 volunteers from Lateral Food Corp, Dr Bronners All One charity & partners cleared up more than 12 kgs of litter in just over an hour on Merri Creek in East Brunswick. Most of the litter was broken glass, plastic bags, plastic food packets, macro plastics, coffee cups and yes some face masks.

In May, Zara and her team of fellow students from the University of Melbourne collected 13kg of rubbish after just one hour - all within 50 metres south of the footbridge over Merri Creek between Sumner Reserve, Brunswick East and Merri Park, Northcote.


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MCMC hots up Eco-burning

St Albans Grassland burnAfter an action-packed couple of months, our busiest burning season yet is at an end.  

This autumn we conducted 14 ecological burns in grassland vegetation. Eight of these were at Merri sites and 6 at other locations across greater Melbourne, including a few sites that haven’t seen a fire for several decades. We’re very excited to see what grassland treasures emerge from these reserves this spring! 

Follow the 'read more' prompt to see MCMC drone footage of the eco-burn at Ngarri-djarrang, a grassland reserve in Reservoir next to Central Creek, a tributary of Merri Creek.


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Endangered Matted Flax-lily flourishes at MCMC

Dianella Ameona World1 19 4 21MCMC is storing 300 large pots of the endangered Matted Flax-lily Dianella ameona at its depot in Brunswick East. The plants were orginally part of a PhD research project into pollination at the University of Melbourne Burnley Campus, but are now destined for various sites in the Merri parklands in Fawkner, to extend pollination pathways.

The University gave the plants to MCMC after an infestation of Thrips changed the focus of the research project from pollination to Thrips. The GPS location of all plants will be recorded and the plantings arranged so that both large and small populations are located in sites of both poor and good quality vegetation to allow for future research projects on pollination.

MCMC Staff news

Congratulations to Angela Foley, our Special Engagement Programs Coordinator, who was recently awarded her PhD from Western Sydney University for a thesis on The art of placemaking on Wurundjeri Country today.

Also, congratulations to Michael Longmore and Chris Geary for obtaining their 'RePL' Remote Pilot Licences, that allows them to fly a drone under business operations. We are now in the process of obtaining a Remotely Piloted Aircraft Operator's Certificate ('ReOC'), so MCMC can become an authorised drone operator. 

Merri Creek Management Committee. 2 Lee St, East Brunswick, Victoria, Australia 3057  (view map in new window )
Phone:(03) 9380 8199     Email: admin@mcmc.org.au
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